RSVP / THE SOCIAL CITY : Joffrey Opening Has Supporters on Their Toes

TIMES STAFF WRITER; Mary Lou Loper's column is published Sundays

Principal figures are turning pirouettes to create the Joffrey Ballet's Opening Night Gala on June 28 at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion of the Music Center.

Gala chairs Linda LoRe, president and CEO of Giorgio Beverly Hills, and Felisa Vanoff plan a spectacular champagne send-off before the Joffrey's re-creation of Leonide Massine's 20th-Century ballet "Les Presages." Dinner and dancing follow. Caroline Ahmanson is honorary chair and Whoopi Goldberg, Lisa Niemi and Patrick Swayze will lend celebrity flamboyance.

Finale: Dona Schultz and Helen Pashgian plan the finale to the Los Angeles Master Chorale's season tonight after Orff's "Carmina Burana"--a dinner in the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion overlooking city lights.

30th Season: The 50 corporations that supported the 30th season of Costa Mesa's South Coast Repertory at the high levels got voluminous thank-yous this week from corporate committee chair Bruce Stump and annual fund vice president Hal Schultz.

Among those saluted at a reception at opening night of Brian Friel's "Dancing at Lughnasa": Colin and Diane Forkner, Tim and Carol Mathews, Richard Reisman, Craig and Nikki Reem, Deborah Rosenthal, Richard Rout, Mary Ann Scanlon, Ted Korgdon and Anne Snowden.

Now it starts all over: The theater's 31st main stage season opens Sept. 2 with Tennessee Williams' "A Streetcar Named Desire."

On the Social Circuit

* Secretary of State Warren Christopher will be in town when Art Works for Children launches its first event--a silent auction of art created especially for the Beverly Hills benefit June 18. Proceeds will benefit the Center for the Vulnerable Child at Los Angeles County/USC Medical Center. This week, his wife, Marie Christopher, and Joan Simon, the co-chairs, joined David Kobalt at Kenneth Cole Sunset for a cocktail party to preview handmade wooden boxes.

* Red-letter dates: Marilyn McCoo and Roy Firestone will entertain at the Center for the Partially Sighted's "Hope in Sight" dinner Saturday honoring James A. Thomas, the Maguire Thomas Partners builder specializing in corporate headquarters . . . "The Lion King," Walt Disney Pictures' 32nd full-length animated feature, premieres next Sunday at El Capitan Theater in Hollywood. Then the crowd sashays to the Hollywood Bowl for a party. Donations will benefit California Institute of the Arts. Among co-chairs: Patty and Roy Disney, Jane and Michael Eisner, Elton John, Judy and Michael Ovitz, Kate Capshaw and Steven Spielberg.

* Los Angeles got plaudits from Sheldon and Sandra Ausman, accepting Humanitarian Awards at the California Hospital Medical Center luncheon at the Biltmore Bowl. Said he: "I am confident that soon there will be an article about companies that are staying and not leaving Los Angeles--companies like Johnson & Higgins, Transamerica, Occidental, Arthur Andersen and all of you who are here today that regularly demonstrate their willingness and dedication to making Los Angeles a better and safer place to live and work." Said she: "We do believe in L.A. It is an innovative, complex, exciting city." Dr. Randy Sherman, named Physician Humanitarian, praised the hospital and said: "It indeed does take an entire community to raise a child." . . . The Pasadena Mental Health Center invited a crowd to journey along "The Silk Road" Friday evening at the home of David Cunningham in Pasadena. Mickey and David Houk were benefit chairs; Judith Brant, patron chair, and Edward Turrentine, Melinda Winston and Eileen Zimmerman, honorary committee . . . President Ellen Frankel and co-chairs Ilene Nathan and Rikki Rosen were in the spotlight at the Salvatore Ferragamo fashion show hosted by United Hostesses' Charities to benefit Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.

* Tony Duqette, who has designed for the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, J. Paul Getty and Doris Duke, opened his Beverly Hills home to the Fashion Circle of the Costume Council and, for some, it was a rare look at his private paradise--lush foliage, Balinese artifacts, pagodas, architectural treasures. Almost everyone said "yes" to the luncheon invitation from Donna Wolff, Fashion Circle chair, and Jane Ackerman, Costume Council president.

* Nancy Reagan, Charles and Mary Jane Wick, and Betsy Bloomingdale are deeply involved in the "Small World, Big Hearts" evening June 14 to open the Carole and Barry Kaye Museum of Miniatures at 5900 Wilshire. It benefits the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation.

* Their formal wrought-iron gateway got a cover-up sign--"Rancho Adorable"--when Blaine Fetter brought in dirt for the driveway, hay bales for the lawn and ordered a fabulous barbecue to surprise wife Lynda on her 40th birthday. Lynn and Doug Brengle walked but next door to celebrate.

* Edie Frere, Heather Shuemaker and Liz Sobelle concocted a unique affair to raise funds for Childrens Chain of Childrens Hospital. They booked Simon Hollings-Binns of the London Trowbridge Gallery to speak on antique prints, their history and rarity, then tossed in a light lunch in Hancock Park.

* Keeping Up: San Marino Area Auxiliary of Five Acres asked Pasadena Mayor Katie Nack to be honorary chair at its benefit fashion show-brunch at Twin Palms . . . Haven House hosted luncheon at the Pasadena Doubletree with author Dr. Susan Forward . . . John C. Etling received the Spirit of Life award from City of Hope Insurance Council . . . About 40 popular restaurants and bakeries showcased their specialties at Universal Studios Hollywood to join in the Taste of the Nation SOS to raise funds for hungry people at such places as Chrysalis and Meals on Wheels . . . More than 250 friends of the Sycamores bought dinners from donor restaurants throughout the Southland, raising $20,000 for the home and treatment center for troubled boys.

* Mary Courtney says Western garb will be admired for the country fair and Santa Maria-style barbecue the Sandpipers host Saturday at Chadwick School on the Palos Verdes Peninsula.

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